Dan Solbach - Artistic Books

In this course we will try to get a critical perspective on artistic book production by analyzing artists’s books, catalogues, magazines, and their modes of production, distribution, reception, and collection.

We will visit or invite editors, printers, publishers, distributors, sellers, and collectors.

The starting ground for our research is the assumption, that the current art book production is anachronistic, static, and blown out of proportion. The book itself has even more become a means to add value to a practice, as well as a power tool for contemporary art institutions to achieve brand recognition. Not every content must necessarily be printed, not every artistic practice needs to be compiled in the medium of the book, not every young artist needs a first monograph.

We will find out if this assumption is true and if so, what we can propose to change it.

The course will exist out of two workshops per semester, with an introductory session in advance. We will define our working structure and goals collectively.

The result will NOT be individual artist books. We will work in a magazine format, with the aim to have a new issue after every workshop. Each participant will open up his/her artistic practice to the others and collectively we’ll edit a magazine format, open and flexible to the findings of our research and discussions.

However, self-initiated publication projects can be discussed and seen through in detail.The aim is for the participant to get a critical perspective on contemporary artistic book production, so that future inquiries can lead to precise and relevant publications.